In a move that had been anticipated, the commissioner of the Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife has named Emily MacCabe as the agency’s first director of information and education since the position ceased being a political appointment.
MacCabe directed the department’s award-winning “Keeper of the Maine Outdoors” campaign and was recently honored as the northeast’s Information and Education Professional of the Year.
“Emily’s exceptional work directing the department’s communications and digital media campaigns as well as our social media and web presence made her the logical choice for this position,” DIF&W commissioner Judy Camuso said. “Her experience, innovation, and passion for the department and the Maine outdoors will serve her well in this new position.”
Traditionally, the I&E director had been one of several political appointments made by the sitting governor, along with the department commissioner and the chief warden. Consequently, the I&E director was often replaced whenever a new governor took office. When she was confirmed as commissioner, Camuso said she wanted to turn the I&E director’s position into one that would provide continuity from governor to governor, and would help give the agency more consistency in its messaging and outreach functions.
Earlier this year, Camuso listed turning the position into a non-appointed job as a priority.
“That position has turned over six times in 10 years, which creates a lot of instability and the lack of focus or vision for our [information and education] division,” Camuso said at the time.
According to a news release, the newly established permanent position will allow the director to oversee a revamped division of education that is more closely aligned with current and developing trends in the marketing and communications field, and will direct the department’s efforts in broadening recognition of the agency and its programs, as well as communicating with a wider audience.
“Emily’s experience with the department and its programs, combined with an enhanced information and education division will allow the department to engage a broader audience and provide even more information and services to all who enjoy Maine’s outdoors,” Camuso said.
MacCabe began working for the DIF&W in 2004, overseeing the Hooked on Fishing and Becoming an Outdoorswoman programs. In 2014 she was promoted to media and graphics supervisor, and has directed the department’s communications campaign, social and digital media presence, the department’s branding campaign, merchandise, and publishing the annual law books.